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Old September 9th, 2017, 01:54 AM   #91
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For Paris, it does seem that first corporate rights as such were given to Paris University shortly before 1210.
Yes, a "community of masters" was attested as in existence by 1170. But this does not specify what rights, if any, the community possessed. Admission to it was mentioned.
But granting of a licence to teach was a function of chancellor of Paris chapter. A post which seems to have been mostly appointed by bishop.
In 1174, there was the first time that Pope interfered with the activities of chancellor, by forbidding all chancellors of French dioceses from charging for the licence to teach. A rule which the pope reversed already 4 years later.
But it was only after 1200 that, in response to a quarrel, a Pope ordered the chancellor to accept any teacher accepted as qualified by majority of existing teachers, thus giving the university as such any power.
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Old September 14th, 2017, 06:32 PM   #92
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Originally Posted by Bart Dale View Post
Which was my point. These Chinese institutions were not universities, they were quire different in nature, Plato Academy was influential, but was not a university, more like a think tank.

There areas where the Chinese institutions differ is why they were not the centers of discoveries and ideas that universities are. When you read about pre-modern major Chinese discoveries and development of ideas, they were not associated with these institutions the way new ideas and discoveries were associated with medieval European universities and modern universities.
The first universities in Europe were also not dedicated to the discovery of new ideas, much less new scientific ideas. The University of Bologna, so often cited in this thread, was founded initially for the purpose of legal studies, the practical goal of which was to produce capable lawyers and administrators. In this respect, it was little different from the Chinese imperial academies, dedicated similarly to the production of administrators and bureaucrats. The scientific focus came much later.


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Actually, the difference is quite significant. The military runs flight schools, where its pilots are trained and certified for a specific set of skills and goals in mind. The Chinese institutions were more like these flight schools run by the military, there purpose being geared to pass the civil service exams in order to become a government bureaucrat.
I still think you are missing the forest for the trees. Chinese academies did not teach "science" because there was no concept of "science" in China. They taught all the other fields of erudition of which they were aware, from the Chinese Classics, to astronomy, to practical administration, accounting, and even math. In "Mathematics Education in Oriental Antiquity and Middle Ages," for example, Alexei Volkov talks about the existence of a Tang Dynasty School of Computations in the capital, which trained students in mathematics and then, upon completion of course, qualified them to take an imperial examination that would grant them status as a person understanding computations - more or less a degree. Math was considered one of the Liu Yi - the six qualities required to be a gentleman - as early as the Zhou Dynasty; it is consequently quite naive to believe that Chinese education centers only concerned themselves with one topic.

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Really? What new ideas were generated, what schools of thought were created, what new discoveries were made in this Academy? Can you give examples of these debates from contemporary sources? I stress contemporary sources, because there is a great tendency to "read into" and project modern ideas and practices inappropriately onto the past. Without primary contemporary sources, when a scholar states something it really is essentially just an opinion he is expressing, no matter how sound his reasoning.
Considering that the Jixia academy was the center of the Hundred Schools of Thought, I'd say that many of their ideas likely came from, or were advanced by, participation in the academy. Chinese records are fixated on the person or persons who came up or advanced an idea, not the institution they were associated with, but many of the most important works of philosophy were composed by scholars who studied or taught at Jixia. It would be prudent to accept that their participation at the academy influenced or inspired their works.

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Passing the civil service exam was not a matter of creativity, and debating new ideas was not a goal. The sheer volume of what was required to know to pass the exam would actually work against creativity and the development of new idea and discoveries, since most students would have little energy leftover to explore new ideas and thoughts.
No, but early European universities also did not encourage creativity. As stated above, they were institutions of formal learning, not creative research.

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It is precisely the achievements of European universities in association with the scientific revolution and the prestige that result which is why everyone works so hard to claim to have the first "university", rather than simply accept that they were centers of learning, but not universities. If it hadn't been for universities association with the scientific revolution, people would not be t4ying to claim tnese over institutions were "universities".
So in your mind, an university is a center of higher learning associated with the scientific revolution? In that case, by definition, there can be no early universities but European universities, since the scientific revolution only occurred in Europe. The debate might as well end here.

Last edited by Cerberus; September 14th, 2017 at 06:39 PM.
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